Wandsworth to get more than 1,000 new trees

Councillor Jonathan Cook gets his hands dirty planting a tree in Battersea

Councillor Jonathan Cook gets his hands dirty planting a tree in Battersea

First published in News
Last updated
by , Chief Reporter

More than 1,000 trees are to be planted in the borough following an investment by Wandsworth Council.

The council is contributing 1,050 trees while the Mayor of London has also paid for another 50 under his own initiative.

Species to be planted include London plane, cherry, lime, pear, crab apple, rowan, oak, hazel, whitebeam, maple, hornbeam and birch.

The work was initially planned for last November but will now take place this spring.

Environment spokesman Councillor Jonathan Cook said: "Many residential areas will benefit from this welcome extra greenery.

"As well as making our residential areas look much more attractive, the trees will also offer great habitats for birds, bees and other forms of wildlife."

Between 2008 and 2012 the council planted nearly 2,000 street trees across Wandsworth, though it is not known how many have been lost through the many developments which have sprung up in the borough since 2008.

While the head of the borough's tree wardens, Andrew Wills, is happy with the new announcement, he still has serious concerns about the council's general policy towards trees in the borough.

Speaking last year Mr Wills said: "We are obviously delighted that such a large number of new trees are being planted.

"We are however concerned that the council is not doing enough to prevent existing large mature trees from being felled in the name of development.

"In particular it appears that the council’s planning department makes it all too easy for property developers to remove such trees (including those with Tree Protection Orders) in exchange for the developer's agreement to plant replacement trees.

"The reality is that such replacement trees are small and often poor specimens and are no substitute for mature trees in terms of the economic, aesthetic and health benefits that mature trees provide."

In a separate project 30 cherry trees are also being planted in King George’s Park as part of a scheme to restore and revitalise its historic and much loved cherry tree avenue.

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